Monday, 28 May, 2018

Indians Abducted by ISIS in Mosul are Dead, Says Sushma Swaraj

Toon by Manjul Toon by Manjul
Sammy Stanley | 20 March, 2018, 14:21

Until October a year ago, both India and Iraq said they believed the missing workers were still alive and would not declare them dead without solid evidence.

Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh today said he was "shattered at the heart-wrenching news" that 39 Indians, kidnapped by the ISIS, had been killed in Iraq.

Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh will go to Iraq to bring back the mortal remains of the Indians killed in Iraq, Swaraj said.

The DNA of a 39th body matched only for 70 percent, the minister said. She added that no government can declare anyone dead without proof.

"I would ask why was this information was delayed by the government, they should tell how it happened, when they died", former union minister Shashi Tharoor had said.

"Today Congress indulged in a very low level of politics, probably Congress president thought how did no uproar happened in Rajya Sabha and chose to ask Scindia ji to lead protests in Lok Sabha". "We wanted to give the families closure", she said.

Swaraj told the Rajya Sabha that the special plane will take the mortal remains to all the three states.

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Opposition parties in India have accused the government of misleading parliament and the hostages' families.

"To track down the bodies of our people and to take them all back to Baghdad was a huge task".

The abducted workers, most from northern India, had been employed by a construction company near Mosul when militants captured wide swaths of the area.

Swaraj said the bodies of victim belonging to Punjab and Himachal Pradesh would either be brought to Amritsar or Ludhiana.

"The bodies were not recovered from mass graves".

Massi had escaped along with Bangladeshis with the help of a caterer with a fake name "Ali", she said. Indian authorities then sent DNA samples from relatives of the missing workers.

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